Beyond Reason and Tolerance
The Purpose and Practice of Higher Education
Robert J. Thompson, Jr.
Reviews and Awards
"Drawing on recent studies of cognition, neurophysiology, and educational psychology - most of it published over the past dozen years - Thompson provides what we might call a brain's-eye view of the rewards of studying the liberal arts, particularly in the late-adolescent/early adulthood period traditionally associated with the undergraduate years. [...] Writing as a scientist, the author makes a strong case for what his colleagues in the liberal arts do when they teach. And the lesson, it seems, is different in terms but not intent from the one taught in the senior-year course on moral philosophy, in the colleges of yesteryear: that the point of expanding the mind is to make it larger than the self." -Scott McLemee, Inside Higher Ed
"[Thompson's] thinking naturally resonates with educators and psychologists. The book is diligently researched and beautifully argued. Thompson clearly understands the needs of the first-time college student and has done a masterful job of tying development to undergraduate education. His magnificent description of the value of a liberal arts education weaves an interdisciplinary tapestry that jumps from philosophy to psychology to education without missing a beat. The result is a book that is worthy of both reading and recommending. I spent a great deal of time reading it, and it was worth every minute. Although this book targets psychologists and educators, anyone who cares about higher education will benefit from reading it, and it is especially appropriate reading for legislators, civic leaders, and lawmakers with serious interests in higher education." --Robert G. Frank, PsycCRITIQUES